How do mental health and addiction recovery connect? An individual may have specific reasons that lead to them developing their addiction, but one of the most common factors is an inability to handle anxiety, stress, and other negative emotions and thoughts. Rather than facing their challenges head-on, drugs and alcohol can help numb negative feelings.
However, this is not a sustainable way to deal with mental health issues. Over time, substance use worsens physical and mental health and makes an individual less capable of withstanding negative emotions and other problems. Addiction changes the way the brain functions in a fundamental way. An individual who is struggling with addiction may find it difficult to manage their behavior, cravings, and compulsions, which can make their addiction more severe and dangerous.
Mental health outlets and multiple support systems during recovery are essential. Cravings and withdrawal symptoms can tear down a person’s health and happiness so much that it can feel that the only way for them to have a temporary escape is to relapse.
Are you or someone you care about dealing with an addiction? Contact Midwest Detox Center online or call 833.647.0392 to seek professional help. Ask about our addiction treatment programs.
What’s the Connection Between Mental Health and Addiction?
Mental health is not just the absence of a mental illness or disorder. Excellent mental health is defined as having a state of well-being that can deal with a person’s stressors, provide motivation to meet their goals, help make them good community members, and leave enough mental space for them to reach their potential. It is a mental state that includes a person’s emotional, social, and psychological issues.
Mental health outlets and positive coping mechanisms are vital for lifelong sobriety and addiction recovery. Substance use can often become a way for people to escape negative emotions, which leads to addiction. Therefore, no addiction treatment program will be successful without making long-term changes in how a person deals with stress, negativity, cravings, and temptations.
Mental Health Outlets
The following are some healthy coping mechanisms that can help people in recovery deal with their mental health issues without turning to substance use:
- Exercise: It’s not just good for your physical health. Your mental health improves when you move more often. Exercising is a great coping mechanism because it releases endorphins that can regulate your mood and reduce stress. Regular exercise also helps strengthen your emotional health and your sleep habits. It can improve your self-esteem and self-image, too – especially if it helps you lose or maintain your weight.
- Creative expression: Take your pick. You can play music, draw, write, sculpt, dance, or learn a new creative hobby. When you create something, you’re allowing yourself to explore your interests while you release pent-up energy through a healthy medium.
- Communication and social interaction: If you don’t talk to someone about what’s causing you to stress out so much that you’ve developed an addiction, your recovery can stop in its tracks. Reach out for help whenever you need it, and look for a support network that will listen to you and help you process your thoughts and work through your tough times.
- Meditation: This practice encourages a person to be more aware of their posture, breathing, and thoughts. It’s a great way to manage stress, as it helps you feel more relaxed and more centered. When you sit with yourself and let go of everything else, it’s easier to ignore your cravings.
- Volunteer work: When you use your energy to help others, you’re also becoming an active member of a community. It can be very fulfilling to channel that energy to something positive and useful, instead of focusing on negativity.
Learn More About Midwest Detox Center’s Addiction Recovery Programs
Are you or someone you care about in Ohio and dealing with an addiction? Give Midwest Detox Center a call at 833.647.0392 or contact us online. Our team will get you the professional help that you need.